Ayurvedic textbooks ascribe many therapeutic properties such as anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial and antioxidant actions to Sida cordifolia Linn. which contains many polyphenols in its roots and seeds. Evaluation of in vivo antioxidant action in rats of the aqueous extract of Sida cordifolia Linn. roots has been done by introducing potassium dichromate for creating acute and chronic oxidative stress. The Folin- Ciocalteu reagent was utilized for assessing the phenol content which was determined as 27.375 mg Gallic acid/gm. During the acute toxicity tests using mice, no significant adverse signs or symptoms of toxicity were noticed up to the dose of 1500 mg/kg and no mortality was reported until this dosage. The Phosphomolybdate Assay using 3, 6 and 9 mg/ml of research drug concentrations resulted in determination of the Total Antioxidant Capacity that was found to be 15.40 ±9.13, 19.00 ±7.56 and 21.02 ±8.42 gm equivalents of Ascorbic acid. The results of the d-ROMs test which assessed the hydroperoxide levels clearly suggested that introduction of research drug could significantly counter the negative effects of both acute and chronic oxidative stress. Broadly similar findings were obtained by using ELISA kit for assessing ROS values where concurrent administration of the research drug resulted in very significant amelioration in respect of oxidative stress conditions.
Traditional Birth Attendants (TBAs) are found in most communities in the world. Although their nature and functions varied considerably. Their practices aimed at providing medical related services for the maintenance of good maternal health, particularly through ensuring good delivery. The study aimed to assess the perceptions of women on TBAs in Zaria Kaduna State, Nigeria. The State is part of Hausa and Fulani land where ethno medicine is recognised and highly practiced. Hausa and Fulani tribes of Zaria were selected for the study. A total of 200 women were randomly selected and interviewed. The information provided were recorded on structured questionnaires. The results showed that TBAs have made great impact in such communities. Low risk perception regarding their personal susceptibility to pregnancy and labour complications was one of the main reasons why most old women with many children delivered at home and utilized TBAs. Respondents showed that TBAs are available at any time, easily accessed, always reliable for pregnant patient women to attend at any moment, caring of women in labour or outside labour. Also they rendered their services to maximum capacity. Respondents in the study area indicated their confidence and beliefs towards utilizing TBAs services. In conclusion pregnant women’s positive attitude towards TBAs was one of the main reasons why most of them preferred the services provided by TBAs. There is no doubt that such TBAs will continue to play an important role in health care provision in the study area. Therefore, comprehensive training of TBAs to act as primary health care workers in community should be considered and implemented.
It has been established that plants are good sources of food and medicine. In recent time, quest for greater knowledge and scientific novelty have led scientists to start paying more attention to minor constituents of food and food plant materials looking for “natural products” with healing powers. This study is an attempt to evaluate the proximate composition, constituents of trace elements, heavy metals, percentage yield of crude extracts/fractions and qualitative identification of phytochemicals in E. coccinea dried leaf. Proximate analysis employed standard analytical techniques of Association of Official Analytical Chemists. Mineral elements were analyzed using Atomic Absorption and X-ray Fluorescence spectroscopies. Tannin, saponin, steroid, alkaloid, reducing sugar, flavonoid and phenol identifications were done using standard analytical techniques. The proximate results indicated that the plant leaf contained high crude fibre content (13.39%) and carbohydrate (66.52%). The mineral elements showed that Calcium (241.78 g/kg), Potassium (46.21 g/kg), Sodium (2.85 g/kg), Magnesium (1.24 g/kg) and Manganese (0.73 g/kg), were the most abundant mineral elements in the leaf sample. This was followed by Zinc, Rubidium, Iron, Nickel, Selenium, Titanium, Copper, Cobalt and Chromium in the range of 0.0014 to 0.28 g/kg. Lead (Pb) was not detected. The phytochemical screening showed the presence of tannin, saponin, steroid, alkaloid, reducing sugar, flavonoids and phenols. These results suggest that the plant leaf is a source of nutrients, mineral elements and phytochemicals. The absence of Lead showed that the plant leaf will not constitute a health hazard for consumers. However, these results justify the wide traditional uses of this plant leaf as food and medicine.
The multifaceted properties of Moringa oleifera have spurred renewed interest into exploiting its nutritional values in the developing countries. In Mauritius, however, Moringa oleifera is fast losing its culinary value despite the predominant medicinal and nutritional values and at this pace all the indigenous knowledge regarding this plant will be lost. Thus this qualitative research aimed at investigating the eating habits, experiences and perceptions regarding Moringa oleifera leaves and pods in Mauritius amongst the elderly Mauritians. A qualitative cross-sectional study was performed using semi-structured interviews with 14 elderly Mauritians. The interview was conducted in “creole” and the data collected was transcribed and analysed. In general, elderly Mauritians perceived Moringa oleifera leaves and pods as tasty vegetables and enjoyed eating them. Both the leaves and pods were considered highly nutritious and good sources of energy and were cooked in a number of ways. They were deemed effective for pain relief. Additionally, the leaves were used to speed up wound healing while the pods were believed to be beneficial to diabetics. However, most of elderly Mauritians also had the perception that Moringa leaves and pods can raise blood pressure. This study provided ample evidence to document the food relevant traditional beliefs and practices and the immense potential of Moringa oleifera to improve nutrition and well-being. In addition, their current limited use due to loss of traditional ways of life as well as the perception of the adverse effect after consumption is a loss of opportunity which implies costs for our economy and society.
The effect of methanolic leaf extract of Boswellia dalzielii Hutch on ocular ATPase of selenite-induced cataract was investigated in Wistar rat pups. Nine groups of 5 pups each were used for the study. Cataract was induced by intra-peritoneal administration of 30 µmol·kg-1 body weight of sodium selenite, to groups 2 to 9, while group 1 received normal saline. The administration of Boswellia dalzielii Hutch extract commenced eight days post administration of selenite, and lasted for 28 days. The extract was orally administered to groups 5 to 9, at doses of 300, 400, 500, 600 and 700 mg·kg-1 body weight respectively; groups 3 and 4 received 50 mg·kg-1 body weight each of vitamins C and A respectively; while groups 1 and 2 received water in place of the extract. Ocular activities of Na+,K+-ATPase and Mg2+ ATPase were estimated by measuring the amount of inorganic phosphate released by them, using ammonium molybdate reagent. The extract treated pups showed elevated ocular Na+,K+-ATPase activity and decreased ocular Mg2+ ATPase activity. This study showed that methanol extract from the leaves of B. dalzielii Hutch modulated the activities of ocular Na+,K+- and Mg2+ ATPases, thus highlighting its possible potential for restoring the osmotic equilibrium of cataractous lenses.